Life, DIYs, & Cooking

BOOKSTORE TRAVELS

Blog

Hello Everyone, I just wanted to share my most recent trip to the bookstore. So for this bookstore adventure I decided to stick a little closer to home and go to The Strand in NYC.

Here is a little show on my walk over to the store. Looking at the traffic makes me happy I am a walker. I have always preferred to walk to places if I can, I feel like I get to see more and I have an opportunity to take a side trip if something catches my eye.

Here is the outside of The Strand, if you have not heard about this bookstore it has the tagline “18 miles of books”. It has new, used, and out of print books so there is something for everyone.

Here is a picture I took in a one of the bookstore nooks. I did not take many pictures because it was very busy that day and I wanted to respect the privacy of others. I did end up spending about an hour and a half in the store. Most of that time I was just scanning the shelves to find something that caught my eye.

Book Haul:

EVERYMAN’S LIBRARY POCKET POETS: EMERSON

18302455

Lately I have been getting into poetry and this pretty little edition caught my eye so I decided to take it home with me.

MISERY BY STEPHEN KING

18302455

I am a very avid Stephen King reader. I easily read a Stephen King book a month. This edition has been one I have kept my eye out for so when I saw it I added it to my pile.

11/22/63 BY STEPHEN KING

18302455

This is a book I have read already, but I borrowed it from the library. I enjoyed it so much I decided I wanted a copy of my own as long as it was not so much. I ended up finding this in the standard size for only $10.00, even though the same edition next to it was $20.00. So I added it to my heavy pile of books.


I hope you enjoyed my little bookstore adventure!

What book should I add to my lookout list?

Sign Off

Life, DIYs, & Cooking

DIY | Bookstagram Background

diy

Supplies:

  • wood
  • wood glue
  • Saw (optional)
  • pencil
  • tape measure
  • something heavy or vice grip
  • stain (optional)

Instructions:

Step One: Lay Everything Out and Plan

Now that you have all of your supplies it is time to get to work. Now I picked up a pack of  wood flooring so my wood snapped together for added structure. Using regular wood is also great, I just love things being very sturdy.

 

 

 

In this step is it very important to plan how you want your background to look. You have a few options you can have your wood planks all the same size like a picnic table or you can stagger them like flooring. In this picture you can see I lined up all of my wood and marked with a pencil where I want to cut my wood. Now I wanted the planks to be staggered so not only did I mark my planks to be cut  the same size, I also marked the random cuts I needed to make. Either way is great, just make sure you measure and plan because once the wood is cut you wont be able to change it.


Step 2: Cut, Be Careful!

While cutting you can either have it done at a local hardware store if you know your dimensions or you can do it at home. You can use a hand saw or a power saw (use at your own risk), but I *highly advise you to ask someone who knows what they are doing* with these tools. They can be very dangerous. If you are younger ask an older family member to help you. Below you can see all my planks of wood cut up.


Step 3: Place the Wood Back Together


At this point place your planks back in the right order. If you cut your wood so it is staggered you can make this step easier by numbering your pieces of wood. This way they are easy to keep track of and you will not waste time trying to find the right pieces to put back together.


Step 4: Securing


To secure the pieces of wood together by cutting another piece of wood to run the length across both the top and bottom of the backside of your backdrop. To see a visual of this you can look at the picture below. You can either secure this by using nails, screws, or wood glue. I used wood glue. If you use wood glue as well make sure you follow the directions on the bottle.


Step 5: (Optional) Let it Dry

If you are using wood glue it is essential that you make sure the wood does not shift while it is drying. I used a vice grip and a very heavy bucket to ensure this. You do not need fancy tools for this, anything heavy will do. Once it is completely dry you are ready to take beautiful pictures on a brand new background.


Final Product

Sign Off

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

 

Life, DIYs, & Cooking

DIY | TBR JAR

diyHello everyone, I don’t know about you, but sometimes I just don’t know what to read next. Most of the time I pick my next read based off of what catches my eye, but sometimes that does not work. So I decided to make a TBR jar. Now of course I went to youtube to get some inspiration. I ended up getting inspiration from J. Bookish , although I did tweak it a bit because I did not want to wait overnight for it to dry. Now on to the DIY project!

Step One: Get the Supplies

 photo IMG_9761_zpsxld37w9d.jpgYou need a jar, Mod Podge, gel food coloring, a few paper plates, a paint brush, and any decorations you may want. I picked up wooden letters and a few small paper flowers. Depending on the decorations you get you may need a hot glue gun or super glue.

Step Two: Add Some Color


 photo IMG_9763_zps8fzf1ud9.jpg

For this step you are going to take your jar and add some Mod Podge, I recommend adding more than you think you will need. Then add a little bit of the gel food coloring. For the coloring I suggest starting off with a little and mixing it, then you can add more if you would like the color to be darker. Stir, stir, stir until everything is evenly mixed. This is important because it will show later on if it is not mixed correctly. P.S. don’t stir to quickly you will get air bubbles.

Step 3: Turn That Jar!

 photo IMG_9765_zpsay4y84cc.jpg

Now that your color is mixed you need to slowly rotate while slowly turning it side ways. This will evenly distruble the mixture inside the jar. If done to quickly you may have uneven coverage and air bubble.

 photo IMG_9766_zpsvd5zubgc.jpg

Once your entire jar is covered continue to rotate it and pour the extra color mixture onto a plate. Get as much of this out as you can because it will speed up your drying time.

Step Four: Let it Dry

 photo IMG_9768_zps7o6dwuxf.jpg

When as much of the liquid is out you place it upside down on a plate. Now at this point you have two options:

  • You can leave it like this and let it dry over night and continue tomorrow
  • Set oven to warm or 175 degrees F. Place the jar upside down for 10 min. on top of wax paper or foil. When those 10 min. are up it is now time to flip your jar over so the opening is facing up and keep in oven for another 20-30 min. If you take it out of the oven and there is still streaking you may need to leave it in for a bit longer.

While it is air drying or you are baking it in the oven now is a great time to either print and cut out the books on your TBR or hand write them. Even though I did not add reading challenges I think that could also be a fun idea.

Step 5: The Fun Part, It’s Time to Decorate!

 photo IMG_9769_zpstgy8ngfn.jpg

Here are a few of the decorations I picked up, you can get whatever it is you like. I did not end up using everything.

 photo IMG_9776_zpscgg0qhuy.jpg

Sorry you cannot really see the color of my jar in this picture. I had to place it on an oven mitt to protect my floor. Yes, I was to lazy to wait over night, I wanted to decorate! Anyway, I suggest planning out what you are going to place on your jar. As you can see in the top left I picked out my letters and flowers and laid them out. Now depending on what decorations you get you may need a hot glue gun, use some more of the glue we used earlier, or you have picked something that already has adhesive on it.

Step Six: Put in Your TBR Titles

 photo IMG_9782_zpsnr6fw1yo.jpg

Here is my final TBR jar. I really love how the color came out. It is light enough you can see all the papers inside, but dark enough that it colorful. I hope you enjoyed this little bookish DIY. I love this DIY because it is so customizable and does not require a lot of supplies. It can be as simple or complicated as you want to make it.


Do you have a TBR jar?

Sign Off

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Life, DIYs, & Cooking

Bookstore Travels

A few weeks ago I drove a few hours to Princeton University and walk around the historic campus and downtown. To my amazement when we were walking around the downtown I found a cute little bookstore that I HAD to go into. Let’s just say I spent an hour in here easily.

The Bookstore: Labyrinth Books 

IMG_9050

What cause my eye first about this bookstore was the fact that they had 6 or 7 tables out front piled high with books. Not only were there so many outside they were ALL on sale! I don’t know about you, but I LOVE when books are on sale. It means I can buy more and not feel as guilty about spending money on them.

When I finally combed through all of the sale books I headed inside dragging my friend along. The inside was bright and beautiful. There were books on two floors. There were displays by subjects, new releases, ancient texts, and classics. What I liked the most was the wide range of non-fiction that I don’t normally find in my local bookstores. So jealous of people who live a reasonable distance away from this place. Here are a few pictures I was able to take inside the shop.


After spending about an hour in this store I ended up leaving with three gorgeous books. Still so sad I have to travel hours to get to this place!

The Haul:

 


I think I want to plan some more day trips to far off bookstores. On a side note, this campus is just as beautiful as the bookshop!

What is your favorite bookstore you love to visit?

 

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Life, DIYs, & Cooking

Funny Book Stories

Since this weekend is filled with family I thought it would be fun to share some funny book related stories or antidotes dealing with my family.

Harry Potter and the Sorcerers Stone by J.K. Rowling

sorcerers-stone-trade-market-us

So when I was younger for some reason I refused to read the Harry Potter series. I am not sure why I did not want to read it, but I was determined not to read it. On the other hand my Aunt Patty who I called Uncle Patty, because it sounded better, was determined to get me to read it. She started reading them as they were published and recognized them as something I would love, I was just a suborn child lol. She bought be a different edition nearly every time she came over. I had a first edition, large print, UK edition, mass market paper back, paper back, and probably more. She was trying her best to get my to read my now beloved series. Then one year she decided to take another approach. She bought me to a midnight release party at a legit castle. It was the most magnificent thing I have seen. The castle was lit up just like Hogwarts, everyone was in costume, and there was even a Diagon Alley set up where you could buy pets, brooms, and your supplies for Hogwarts. It was here I began to want a pet toad so I could be like Neville. My Aunt rightfully said, “I think you should ask your mom first”. Sadly, I was so young I cannot remember if it was the 4th book or not, but I do know that it was a magical night that bought the books to life for me and I have absolutely loved the books since. So moral of the story is, I am stubborn and the only way to make me read something is to bring me to a castle.

The Tale of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter

cvr9781604333763_9781604333763_hr

Alright, so this one is another story of where I boycott a book also dealing with my Aunt Patty. When I was younger I would spend weekends at my Aunt’s house. At this time she did not have her son, but often watched my older cousins and I. Even though she LOVED to read, she only had one children’s book, The Tale of Peter Rabbit. Well, every night that I slept over she would read it to me. Once I was all tucked in she would pull it out and sit  beside me a read. Week after week, month after month, quite frankly even though I have “heard” the story so many times I cannot remember what happens, I think I tuned it out. Anyway, it got to a point I would pretend to go to sleep so she would stop reading the story. I would put my head facing away so she could not see my eye, incase them moved. In my defense, you can only listen to the same story so many times before it gets boring. The funny part is my Aunt and I talked last year about this and she had no idea I was pretending to sleep. Then she told me I never really heard to entire story because she would change a particular part as she read because she didn’t want to scare me. So as it turns out we were fooling each other in a way. When we finally talked about it we had a really great laugh.


I hope you enjoyed this funny little stories, do you have any funny bookish stories? If you do I would love to hear them!

 

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Life, DIYs, & Cooking

My Reading Routine

LetsTalk12:17

When:

Most of the time my reading is done on the weekends. During the week I am working 98cbe271faf500e149e14f5527fc035b
everyday and when I come home I am tired. I just want to come home and turn off my brain for fear that it might overload. So, this leaves me with a lot of reading on the weekend. Now, since I don’t have work on the weekends, most weekends. I read anytime of day I can. If I have I have plans in the afternoon I will read in the morning and at night. If I have plans at night I read from the moment I wake up to the moment I need to start getting ready. I love reading and I make time for it, any time.

Where:

woodsI tend to read in two different places. Out of the two I prefer to read outside. I love reading outside, I find it relaxing and it removes me from a lot of the distractions in my life. Now, since this is outside I can’t only read here, but I wish I could! I tend to read outside in the Spring, Summer, and Fall, as long as it is not raining out or very windy. There is nothing more annoying than the wind turning the pages for you and you accidentally get spoiled.

The second place I like to read is in my room. I read either in my bed, or in my arm chair. I enjoy reading here is because it is my space, I can turn off the T.V. burn a candle and control the atmosphere. I can once again remove distractions from this room. The only down side is that sometimes you cannot tell other people to turn down the television. So I still get distracted or side tracked.

 

What I “need”:

When I read I personally do not “need” much. I say “need” and not need because if I did af4e46320371bdd4737232150cfd25abnot have these things I could still read. When I read I love to be comfortable, I tend to read for long periods of time. So I usually throw on my PJs or some yoga pants before I crack open my book. I also need quiet, now when I say quiet I do not mean the absence of sound. I mean I need to not hear people talking, that sounds so harsh, but is it true. Sorry! Hearing conversations or lyrics of a song distracts me personally and it stops me from getting involved in my book, which takes away from the reading experience. On the other hand, I do love listening to classical or instrumental music and the sounds of nature while I am reading.

When I am outside I really only need a comfortable place, my book, and a source of music. When I am inside I light a candle, get a comfortable blanket to wrap myself in, and put on some music. The candle I pick is usually something I think would go with the book. I am fortunate enough to have family and friends who make candles so I get gifted them often. Lighting a candle and changing the smell of the room, helps me feel like I am entering the world that was created between the pages. Also, another bonus to this is that when I light the candle outside of reading it reminds me of the story and characters.

So there are my reading habits/reading routine. I hope you enjoyed!


What is your reading routine?

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Life, DIYs, & Cooking

Bookstagram Reflection: January

 

I cannot believe the first month of 2017 is already behind us. It seemed like it flew right past me. Anyway, I wanted to take this time and reflect on the pictures I have taken on instagram over the past month. Man, were my tastes all over the place! I had graphic novels, horrors, classics, thrillers, and some non-fiction books. Some of my photos were full of color while others were in black and white. I think my instagram page is like my taste in books, all over the place.

Below I have added two of my favorite of the month. One is an old edition of Little Women by Louisa May Alcott and the other is The Bazaar of Bad Dreams by Stephen King. Now comes the reflection part of the post.


Little Women

What I liked:

There are a few things about this picture that make me enjoy it. The first is that I love this book. I first read this book when I was a little girl and have reread it numerous times throughout my life. Even though so much has changed for me I still enjoy the story and it continues to resinate with me. Second, I love the worn look of the book as well as the natural look of the wooden chair. This makes me want to add some more natural elements into my photos.

What I did not like:

One thing I did not like about this picture is the color. For me it feels like the blue of the book is fighting with the deep brown of the chair. To me the main focus is the book not the chair.


The Bazaar of Bad Dreams

What I liked:

What I love the most about this picture is the intensity of the red and blue of the book. Even though my eyes are torn between looking at both of these colors they are both on the main focus of the photograph. The contrast of the color saturated book and white simple background works well in my eyes.

What I did not like:

When I took this photo it was boring. There was minimal challenge in balancing the photo.  I don’t know, I guess I just like a little bit of a challenge. I enjoy setting up and staging photographs that are dynamic, but not overwhelming.


Thanks for reading my little self reflection. From time to time I personally think it is important for me to look at the past to make the future better.

What are some things you love seeing in bookstagram pictures?

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads